The last week has stayed above freezing, getting as high as 50 and even raining well a few times. I am completely STOKED because this nice weather has spelled the end of the feet of snow outside our windows. We probably had 3-4 feet  at one point, with snow piles topping 20′ around every corner of the apartment complex. It was insane, especially after last year, when we only had two snowfalls at around 4″ each, which promptly melted before any good sledding could be had.

This warm weather means things on the house are finally kicking into gear. I’ve been on the phone with the builder, the plumber, the excavator, the inspector, the county clerk, and local building supply companies the past few days. So far I have had a few pleasant surprises:

1. The perk test was done last fall without me being the wiser. The plumber already has plans for the septic all drawn up, and will be taking them to the county for a new sanitation permit on Wednesday or Thursday. He will be one of the first ones on site, and is looking forward to starting as soon as the road restrictions are done.

2. Road restrictions should lift sometime in the next week or two! Hurrah! Here is a website that keeps us Wisconsinites… Wisconsiners… Wisconsiganders? Whatever. It keeps us updated as to when the restrictions are lifted and which roads are effected. http://www.dot.wisconsin.gov/travel/truck/docs/class2roadwaymap.pdf

3. There are a lot of local places that sell cedar posts for the perimeter fence around out garden for MUCH cheaper than Menard’s or TSC. I’ve been calling around, and found out I can get unpeeled eight-footers for $2.50 each, or peeled for $3.50 each. Compare that to $10.99 per post from the big box stores. Yikes.

Everything is falling together for the house. I found some good deals on our faucets and a ceiling light/fan for the boys’ room. Saved $34. Doesn’t seem like much, but every penny adds up when the project is this big.

Speaking of money, we found out how much the septic system will cost – $3250 plus $725 for the perk test and sanitation permit. That comes to a grand total of $3975. A beautiful number, considering we had budgeted $5500 for it!

I have also been doing some brainstorming, and I think I have a great idea for what to do with our southern lot. There are about 6 acres of woods and 7 acres of field. We bought it because we didn’t want some creepy asshat moving in next to us and being able to look in our windows whenever he wanted. Our neighbor experiences haven’t always been the best. 🙂 We didn’t have plans for it. I don’t think either one of us really thought about what to do with it when we bought it – it just sounded like a good idea.

A U-pick farm. Brilliant, right?

Okay, so we have some details to hash out yet on it, but I think I could easily make it work. It’s not like we’d have a lot of competition. The nearest U-pick is a 25 minute drive, and all they offer are one type of strawberry. The nearest one to offer blueberries is about 90 miles away. I think this would be a perfect fit for us, especially if we focused mainly on blueberries, because they really aren’t as labor intensive as strawberries and we don’t need a ton of specialized equipment.

My next post will be a more detailed hashing-out of this idea. I’ve had a lot of good input on a forum I go to, as well as some good back and forth with my husband. I’d welcome more if anyone here has experience or some brilliant insight as a customer.

Toodles for now!

 

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